Sunday, January 8, 2012

Succulent plant with white hair

I'm assuming the plant to be a succulent even though older leaves in this plant are not really thick but not too thin either.

New leaves are born with a layer of white hair to protect them from insect attacks.


New leaves are tender and filled with sap. Without protection these leaves would be an easy source of food for some insects. The plant has developed a simple but effective defence mechanism. The hairs could be sticky which would prevent insects from reaching the leaves.


As the leaves grow and mature, the hairs are shed. Grown leaves are visible in the background.


Some varieties of cactus have similar protective system.

.........

14 comments:

dr.umesh l said...

I think you are right. For me it looks like, it is a succulent plant (a cactus) belonging to class
"CRASSULA MULTICAVA MEDIOPICTA" and the hairy structure might be called as 'Ciliate....'

siddeshwar said...

Dr.Umesh, some of my posts are like "fill in the blank" and you fill them up :)

dr.umesh l said...

I quote (Voltaire)-Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well !....:)

Dimitra Decorasylum said...

Hello from Greece. A bit late for this comment but anyway...If I am not mistaken your plant is tradescantia sillamontana (a.k.a. Cobweb Spiderwort, White Velvet, White Gossamer Plant, Hairy Wandering Jew, Cobweb spiderwort. Does it produce violet/magenta flowers?

siddeshwar said...

Act of sharing knowledge is not bound by time, I think. Thank you for the input, Dimitra.

Dimitra Decorasylum said...

You are correct! Very nice blog by the way. I especially like the "quotes by sms" you post from time to time and the close up photos of plants and insects.

siddeshwar said...

Thank you again. About the question if the plant flowers- yes, it does produce little violet flowers.

dr.umesh l said...

@Dimitri and @Siddesh, thanq so much for the info... "knowledge shared is knowledge gained" holds good for this discussion...

Dimitra Decorasylum said...

Good day to both of you. Regarding the plant: "Tradescantia sillamontana is a perennial evergreen herbaceous plant of the genus Tradescantia. This species is one of the most succulent and xerophytic, but at the same time one of the most ornamental and exotic species of Tradescantia. Its habitat is dry areas of northern Mexico." Source Wikipedia. I have one potted and really seems to do better when I neglect it than when I care for it. 4 winters now it "dies" and again every spring grows back.

siddeshwar said...

You are right Dimitra, some plants are better off when left to themselves. The plant in the picture was potted too. Its at the nursery in Botanical garden of Karnatak University, Dharwad. The garden is home to few rare plants including Krishnae Ficus ~ Krishna's Buttercup.

Dr. Umesh, its good to see you back here..

Dimitra Decorasylum said...

Nature has her way of doing things: you in Dharwad, India, I am in Argos, Greece, yet both of us "shared" a view of the same potted plant :)

siddeshwar said...

..such a lovely thought :) Greece and India are old friends.. I believe you know have heard of Megasthenes.

Good day to you, Dimitra

dr.umesh l said...

My pleasure, always enjoys doing but due to some restrains was not able to do so oftenly....

Dimitra Decorasylum said...

Good morning. Our cultures have shared more than an ambassador :) By the way, I looked up Krishna's buttercup and looks quite interesting, very beautiful leaves